Karnataka Govt. and AstraZeneca jointly to Develop Cancer Screening Tech

India Pharma Outlook Team | Friday, 13 October 2023

 India Pharma Outlook Team

The Karnataka government signed an agreement with AstraZeneca Pharma India to implement Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based lung cancer screening equipment that will screen a patient for 29 lung ailments in a single chest X-ray. According to officials, an AI-powered chest X-ray device built by healthtech firm 'Qure.ai' would assist the government in detecting lung nodules, which are commonly precursors to lung cancer, in 19 district hospitals in Karnataka, overcoming a critical early detection issue, as per Pharmabiz. The MoU was signed on behalf of the government by National Health Mission , Health & Family Welfare Services, in the presence of Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao.

"Cancer can be treated curatively if detected early." We are implementing this technology in all of Karnataka's district hospitals, and we are confident that it will emerge as the most beneficial way of detecting lung cancer early and reducing the financial and emotional burden of healthcare on patients, particularly those who cannot afford even primary care," Minister Rao said. According to officials, the incidence of cancer in Karnataka is increasing by roughly 1% each year for both men and women, citing a research by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), which stated that cancer cases in Karnataka are predicted to climb by 90,000 by 2025.

Lung, stomach, esophageal, and prostate cancer are the most frequent cancers in men in Bangalore alone. Breast, cervix, ovary, and corpus uteri cancers are the most frequent in women. Dr Sanjeev Panchal, Managing Director and Country President, AstraZeneca India, said, “With this opportunity to partner with the Karnataka government we can cater to the needs of patients at the community level. This will help incidental detection of nodules earlier thereby improving early cancer diagnosis to a large extent as we integrate AI based chest X-ray and low dose CT at the ground level."

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